Coast Explorer Magazine - The Explorer's Guide to the Oregon Coast and Washington Coast
Facebook Email Twitter Instagram Pinterest
Read Coastal Explorer Visit Destinations in Coastal Explorer Coastal Explorer Calendar of Events
Arctic Travelers
Published: 09/02/2013
 
Snowy Owl photographed at Fort Stevens State Park near Astoria, Oregon.
Snowy Owl photographed at Fort Stevens State Park near Astoria, Oregon.
Photo By Neal Maine

The majestic and rarely seen Snowy Owl occasionally winters on the "tundra" of the North Oregon Coast

Though the Northwest coast isn't exactly known for its whopping snowfall, it remains an attractive wintering ground for some North American Snowy Owls. Most of these stunning birds spend their summers north of the Arctic Circle; winter destinations are highly variable. Some stay local, some migrate south into Canada and the Northeastern US, while others deviate into regions atypical of the birds' migration pattern. During irruptive years, the deviants are numerous and find themselves in such unlikely places as the Northwest coast. Beaches and mudflats function as approximate tundra and the highly adaptable birds of prey shift their diet from lemmings and ptarmigans to rats and waterfowl. The Snowy Owls' lucent plumage, diurnal habits and tendency to roost in open, treeless areas make them easier to spot than most owls, so grab your binoculars and check the beaches. Locales of past sightings include Florence, Yaquina Bay and Seaside, but most dependable is the South jetty of the Columbia at Fort Stevens State Park, especially in December. - By Jenna Boyle

Search
MORE TO EXPLORE
 
Lincoln City Getaway... with Your Dog Savvy dogs know that Lincoln City's abundance of pet-friendly amenities let pooches travel in... [read more]
On the beach, on the town or on the go, you'll discover a new adventure each time you set out... [read more]
With tax-free shopping, and a fun downtown core to explore, Seaside offers a one-of-a-kind shopping experience. Whether your taste leans... [read more]
Sponsored Links
  • Cannon Beach
    Featured Destination
    Great restaurants, shopping and Oregon's most famous rock too. There is magic here!
  • Elements By the Sea Spa Hallmark Resort
    Cannon Beach Activities and Attractions
    We offer treatments that restore your signature balance, using creative and advanced techniques.
  • Seaside Carousel Mall
    Seaside Activities and Attractions
    An attraction for over 30 years, ride the indoor carousel, unique shopping finds and eateries.
  • Jennifer Sears Glass Art Studio
    Lincoln City Activities and Attractions
    Blow your own glass art or explore the one-of-a-kind on-site gallery featuring local artists.
Subscribe
to Coast Explorer
Subscribe to Coast Explorer Magazine now and don't miss another issue featuring our beautiful photography and design, interesting feature stories and guides to coastal attractions, events, dining, shopping, arts and lodging. Annual subscriptions (3 issues) are only $15